A fragrance that has inspired an entire generation of young people across the world has gone the way of the dodo.
For many of them, Christian Dior has become a part of their daily lives.
“I was always drawn to the clothes I saw and what they looked like and I think this is what inspired me to start my own line,” said Christian Dori, a student at New York University, who started wearing the perfume in 2015.
“So, that’s what started the idea that I would be doing this perfume business, and that’s why I’m in this business.”
“I have been working in the perfume business for a long time,” Dori said, adding that the experience of starting his own business helped him find his passion.
“It was actually really inspiring to see the work of others that have been inspired by the fragrance.”
Dior is a well-known designer for men and women and has been a fixture in fashion circles for decades.
The French-born, London-based brand was founded in Paris in 1959 by Dior founder Pierre and Giselle Dior.
The brand has also won numerous awards and has become one of the most recognisable in the world, with many people going to Paris to purchase its signature handbags.
Dior was first launched in 1961, and was designed to give women a chance to feel their feminine beauty.
“Dior has a lot of elegance in it, but the idea of a feminine body is also very strong, it’s very feminine,” said Elizabeth Burch, a marketing and communications professor at the University of Virginia.
“And so, I think Dior was trying to make that a little more accessible to the young people, who are often drawn to fashion in general.”
For many, it has also helped them feel like they are part of the Paris scene.
“There are definitely more women dressing up in Dior now than there were before,” Burch said.
“And I think because it’s a very popular brand now, that they’re also finding themselves more comfortable being a part, even if it’s just on the street, walking around in heels or something.”
Dori has worked on the fragrance for over two decades, and said the experience has been invaluable.
“When I started it, it was really hard,” Dior said.
“I think it helped me develop an idea of what I wanted to do, what my style is, and I also thought it helped a lot in my personal development.”
“It’s been a huge experience, it gives you a whole new understanding of what you want to do with your life,” he added.
But not everyone is happy with the brand.
“The brand is not about making money, it is about doing something to make people feel good, and there is a big part of that about dressing up,” Burs said.
According to Burch and Burch there are “very few” women in Paris that are drawn to Dior, and even fewer women who are drawn by the way the brand is made.
“You’re not going to find a lot that says that there is that much passion for it,” Buns said.
Burs added that Dior’s appeal to women in the city was also based on the fact that it has “very feminine, sophisticated and modern designs, which are very feminine in their way, but also have a lot more sensuality”.
“It is very feminine, very elegant and very sophisticated in its way,” Banners added.
“They’re very masculine in their style, and so you’re seeing the way they dress.”
“You are wearing dresses that you’re not even wearing, you’re looking very much like the person who’s dressing,” she said.
Some people have called Dior “disgusting” and “unmanly”, while others say the fragrance is more about the money than the product.
“If you’re going to be a designer in Paris, you have to have a good sense of style, you don’t want to wear clothes that don’t suit you,” Bains said.
The company has since opened a factory in France, and has launched several new fragrances in the US, Europe and Asia.
“This is just one of many examples of a young designer going into this business, trying to be creative, but trying to also have something that they could be proud of, so people can’t judge them for their money,” Bairs said.
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